Psycasm is the exploration of the world psychological. Every day phenomenon explained and manipulated to one's own advantage. Written by a slightly overambitious undergrad, Psycasm aims at exploring a whole range of social and cognitive processes in order to best understand how our minds, and those mechanisms that drive them, work.
My posts are presented as opinion and commentary and do not represent the views of LabSpaces Productions, LLC, my employer, or my educational institution.
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What untapped market of woo would you develop to dupe the masses? Create a pseudo-tech or woo-powered product, describe it, and win! WIN! WIN!
Skepticomp 2011 is open to anyone, anywhere.
A $20 iTunes voucher to the iTunes of your choice
(Or alternative prize of equivalent value)
and meeting with Deepak Chopra (Disclaimer: not strictly true).
Entries must be submitted by Sunday, the 11th of December to Skepticomp@gmail.com
Subject line: Skepticomp11 yourname
Submission can be in any format (but please, don't make it too exotic). A bare-bones text-based example follows. If you choose to submit and image/advertisement of your product, please ensure to include in text a clear description of what your product is (see point 1). Points 2 and 3 can be addressed however you see fit.
Maximum 1 entry per person. Please keep your entry confidential and avoid posting on the FB wall (if you have acess to it) or otherwise including it in comments, etc.
There will be two winners - The Official Winner (as decided by the panel of UQ Skeptic judges) and a People's Choice Award. The People's Choice award will be decided by the people from a short-list generated by the official panel.
[Ref: http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=45410; yup, that’s a real thing].
Originality and Woo Innovation x/10
How novel the idea is and whether this is an advance for pseudo-science everywhere. Is this the new shark cartilage? Is this like Steve Novella’s ‘Evaporative Therapy’
Does the idea seem like it has traction? Will people fall for it?
Is your tech dressed up in sciencey sounding language and has the shiny veneer of respectability?
Not all woo is sciencey. Some is mystical. Does your tech tap untold powers of the earth’s natural resonance? Is this forgotten technology once available only to the ANCIENT MAYA but available to you, today, for only $14.95?
The Cure x/10
Will people think they’ve been cured? For instance, people aren’t going to be able to convince themselves that they have grown 6cms overnight, but they’re probably willing to believe that their knives are sharper, their memory is better, they’re more attractive to the opposite sex AND that it cures cancer. EVERYTHING cures cancer.
*The Sciencism and Mysticism categories are likely exclusive, but not necessarily so. Skepticomp 2011 is open to all kinds of Woo. Why should we discriminate?
The Judges (the members elect of the UQ Skeptics) will be blind to the identity of each entrant. Depending on how many entries there are all entries will be evaluated by each judge. A mean score will be calculated and the winner appropriately declared. Currently, judges may enter the competition, but will not mark their own entry, and will not be permitted to discuss any entries with other judges. The People's Choice award will be voted on by the public and will be drawn from a short-list generated by the panel.
All entries will be googled - any overt similarity to existing products, intentional or otherwise, may render an entry void subject to the decision of the judges.
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